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A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & Owner
Ray Rasmussen, General Editor

Volume 11, Number 3, September 2017
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Charles D. Tarlton
Northampton, Massachusetts, USA


Some Time After Dark

. . . just so much feverishly produced kazoo music

                                                      â€”Denis Johnson

City buses finished their diesel-grumbling along the street, and out of the quiet shadows of the scaffolding that wrapped the old church, someone screamed, and the sound of it hung in the darkness and made icicles of sound that shattered along the stones. It was a noise from a forest or a jungle, the shriek of a rabbit caught by coyotes in a vineyard at night or the piteous yowling of an old wandering dog struck by a car and thrown to the side of the road. And, again, the cry! I stood and listened. A well-dressed man stepped into the light, ran his fingers through his hair, and looked up at me, as if to say, "And what about you, brother?"

some ordinary
things concealed in shadows
where the light had been
hiding the darker goings-on
we never even notice

it was more a dream
overheard from a hotel
window after dark
behind me light in the room
listening to the whispering

it might have been wind
blowing through church pinnacles
that hour of howling
when the breath of the angels
pleaded down to us for help

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